On the weekly, local public affairs program Southern Tier Close Up, Christina Olevano and Jill Teeter, the driving forces behind the Tioga County Allies in Substance Abuse, Prevention (ASAP) Coalition, talk about the program getting its first big grant to steer youth away from dangerous substances.

Kathy Whyte/ WNBF News

Olevano, ASAP Program Director, says the group has been working on volunteer power and the help of several government, school and community sources to forward its mission to create and sustain a reduction in local youth substance abuse.  The new, $124,000 Drug Free Community grant for the next five years helps to further identify and address youth issues including perceptions concerning alcohol use and abuse and the overall view of the scope of substance dependence problem in Tioga County compared to other regions.

Teeter, who is the newly hired full-time project coordinator, says the group has already drawn up a 12-month action plan and is working to get the word out about ASAP.

More information on ASAP, its work and community partners can be found on their new website: www.tiogaasap.org or by calling (607)223-4066.

Southern Tier Close Up airs Sunday at 6 am on 99.1 The Whale.